System Bits: March 26


Swear to tell the truth Lots of lies are told on the Internet. Shuyuan Ho of Florida State University wants to unveil those falsehoods with an online polygraph. “The future of my research is an online polygraph that could be used many different ways,” said Ho, an associate professor in the College of Communication and Information. “You could use it for online dating, Facebook, Twitter... » read more

Trade War Looms Over Materials


It’s time to pay close attention to rare earths and raw materials--again. In fact, the supply chain teams and commodity buyers at aerospace, automotive and electronics companies may have some new and potentially big problems on their hands. For some time, the European Union (EU), the United States and other nations have been at odds with China over rare earths. China, which accounts for... » read more

Extending The Hardmask


In chip production, the backend-of-the-line (BEOL) is where the critical interconnects are formed within a device. Interconnects—those tiny wiring schemes in devices—are becoming more compact at each node. This, in turn, is causing a degradation in performance and an increase in the resistance-capacitance (RC) delay in chips. “The scaling roadblocks that the interconnect faces need to ... » read more

EU Due Diligence For Conflict Minerals Focuses Upstream, For Now


By Rania Georgoutsakou EU proposed legislation on responsible sourcing of ‘conflict minerals’, published on 5 March 2014, will create a voluntary scheme focusing on upstream suppliers that should help downstream users get the information they need to comply with the U.S. Dodd Frank Act. The EU proposals largely address concerns raised by SEMI and other industry associations, but things cou... » read more